Muslims shield Christians in Kenya bus attack


A group of Muslims travelling on a bus attacked by militant Islamist gunmen in north-eastern Kenya protected Christian passengers by refusing to be split into groups, according to eyewitnesses.

At least two people were killed when suspected al-Shabab militants targeted the bus on the road between the capital, Nairobi, and the northern town of Mandera although the death toll could have been higher if it wasn’t for the actions of a group of brave Muslims.

An employee of the Makkah bus company, who had spoken to the driver involved in the attack, confirmed to the BBC that Muslims had refused to be separated from their fellow Christian passengers.

When al-Shabab killed 148 people in an attack on Garissa University College in April, the militants reportedly singled out Christians and shot them, while freeing many Muslims.

Mandera Deputy county commissioner Julius Otieno said: ‘They were trying to identify who were Christians and who were not. They told the non-Christians to return to the vehicle.

Mandera Governor Ali Roba said: ‘The locals showed a sense of patriotism and belonging to each other by insisting that the al-Shabab should kill them together or leave them alone.’

Mr Roba added: ‘This forced the militants to leave in a hurry fearing retaliation by residents from nearby villages.’